How to Prepare for a Career Fair
Do Your Research:
If you are going to a college career fair, most colleges offer a career fair handbook/guide or the Handshake app to help you prepare for the career fair before you get there. Both tools will show you what companies will be attending and their booth numbers. Spend some time looking up the companies attending. Decide which companies you want to introduce yourself, research those companies to understand what they do and the types of positions they may offer. That will save you time so you aren’t confused on who you should approach. If you have a map of the career fair take time to review it so, you know where each company’s booth is located. It may be helpful to highlight your planned stops to avoid getting lost or overwhelmed by the number of booths at the event.
Plan a Short Spiel About Yourself:
Most employers will ask you questions about yourself. Prepare a few key points from your resume to highlight. Some questions they may ask are: what kind of positions you are looking for, what characteristics are you looking for in a company, work experience you have had, your educational background, what types of training and courses you have enjoyed, and where you would like to locate for work.
Dress to Impress:
Choose your outfit the day before. At career fairs you want to dress business professional.
- Business professional for men includes dress pants, dress shirt, and dress shoes. Sport coats and ties are always a nice touch.
- Business professional for women could include dress pants, dress tops, heels, or closed toe flats. Skirts and dresses are great if they are an appropriate length.
Stay away from crazy patterns and bright colors. Keep it sharp and classy!
What to Bring:
Bring multiple copies of your resume (it is better to be overprepared than underprepared). A portfolio is great to bring to hold all your resumes. If you don’t have a portfolio a folder can work as well. It is also handy for keeping the information and business cards you collect from employers. Bringing your cell phone could also be beneficial. Some companies use QR codes at their booths for you to scan. If you take your phone, make sure it is on silent and not a distraction when talking to employers.
Show You’re Interested:
When approaching employers introduce yourself clearly, and make sure you catch their names. Greet them with a handshake if they are willing to shake your hand. Make eye contact with them while they are speaking to you. When talking to employers make sure that you are asking them questions. Some examples of questions you can ask are:
- What are some of the job responsibilities for the position?
- What is the company culture like?
- How can I apply?
- How can we stay in touch?
Make sure to take business cards of the employers you talked to and take any information they have provided about the company from their booths. Another way to show that you are interested is by emailing the employer after the career fair, thanking them for their time, and letting them know you look forward to hearing from them in the future.
In conclusion, show up to a career fair prepared. Research the companies before, bring multiple copies of your resume, dress to impress, ask questions, and follow up with the employers you talked to. Good luck at the career fair!
If you are currently looking for a job make sure to check out our career page to see what positions Adaptive Solutions Group has available.